Updated: Apr 28, 2021
In our last post on the importance of plumbing features we focused on faucets, tubs, drains and the all powerful shower niche. There are just too many options to fit into one post hence this second one! Today we will focus on door options for your bathroom, how windows affect the overall look and feel of your bathroom, the difference between bathroom fans, various lighting options and how to incorporate plumbing fixtures into your decor style.
In the world of renovation the options for contractors are endless ! We cannot encourage you enough to carefully choose your contractor. Having a contractor who can help guide you on each decision along the way without putting pressure on you, and listing out the facts understandably, who has no other agenda but the best interest for your space, will save you many headaches along the way. Be on the look out for one of our future posts that will help guide you with what to look for in a contractor!
The pros have spoken and here’s what they have to say about doors! First, there are three main types of mechanisms of action to choose from when looking for a door for your bathroom including the pocket door, the hinge, and the barn style door.
The pocket door is a fantastic option for saving space. Mounted along a track inside the wall, it hangs from the top of the wall and cause an illusion. When open it appears it’s vanished but really it just slid inside the wall. This is a modernists dream! It serves two functions: saving space and well, disappearing. One con to a pocket door is that it poses hardware issues in the future. A simple off-track door could lead to frustration and a visit from your handyman or contractor.
The next door is the hinge door. This is a very common door used and you probably don’t need us to explain this one to you but just in case; a hinge is hardware that has a fixed axis that it rotates on, much like an elbow joint. The benefits of using a hinge door is that it is cost effective, come in many varieties and they have the option of rotating inward or outward. They can also be used for indoor and outdoor purposes.
Lastly lets talk about barn style doors. These doors are hands down the most beautiful in our opinion and scream originality! Maybe you can’t put your finger on that last detail that will pack a punch to your bathroom. The barn door might just be what you’ve been looking for ! If you have a gorgeous bathroom (and bedroom) that you want to show off, there’s no better way to do so than having a barn door installed.
Now that we mention it, the title doesn’t really do them justice. A trick of the trade, that might just make you feel like a king or queen is separating your master bedroom from the bathroom by using a none other than a barn door. These beauties might just be a contractors dream come true ! They eliminate any warranty issues that a pocket door might pose, because they don’t require the extra wall space. They can also fit in precarious places. Barn doors have a magical quality about them in that, they can leave even the humblest of homes feeling grand.
Windows - oh the many options ! Let’s dive into some of them. When thinking about a window you don’t necessary put much thought into it. But let us tell you- they can make or break a bathroom experience and look. Remember the last time you dined in a posh breakfast joint only to discover the bathroom window boarded the patio with a single curtain, literally next to you as you did your business? Yea… bathroom window fail. Placement is everything. Windows provide natural light and privacy. It’s important to consider the placement of windows for that very reason.
Professional contractors will recommend installing tempered glass windows in your bathroom. The reason for this is because this type of glass is the “safety glass” option because of the way it’s made. Tempered glass is more durable because it goes through a specific heating and cooing process. Regular glass cools quicker which makes it more fragile and breakable. Tempered glass is also required in showers due to this safety factor.
A few popular options of bathroom windows are the crank window, hopper, textured glass, or transom windows. The term crank window explains it’s simple mechanism by, you guessed it- a crank. They can open like a shutter or from the bottom up. These kinds of windows accommodate window treatments nicely.
Hopper windows provide a great source of ventilation because they open downward, don’t typically require window treatments are are usually higher up on the wall. If you live in the middle of nowhere you might just have the liberty of installing a large and beautiful clear glass window in your bathroom. Most of us need privacy, making a textured glass or block window the best choice.
There’s a variety of beautiful textured glass options in the showroom to choose that provide different light filtrations. These windows can often be a nice focal point making window treatments unnecessary. Keep in mind that the more opaque the glass the less light will come in through the window. If you don’t have the budget for a window installation there is the option of installing a skylight which will provide indirect lighting into your bathroom. Windows that are in showers are typically installed higher up for privacy reasons. Another alternative to installing a new window is adding recessed lighting in the bathroom instead. It’s important to note, always have a certified glass installer for your windows, for liability reasons.
There are a number of things to consider when selecting a bathroom fan including efficiency, noise, size and features. First, take into consideration the size of your space. It’s also important to check the features you already have including heating, lighting and sensors and take these into consideration before choosing your bathroom fan.
California regulations require bathrooms to have to have fan with a humidity sensor. The purpose of a bathroom fan is to rid the room of excess humidity, moisture, odor and vapor which may accumulate on walls and mirrors. The Panasonic fan is the most recommended bathroom fan because it is efficient and quiet. If you don’t already have adequate lighting it may behoove you to install a fan that also serves as a light. If you live in a cold climate there is also an option to have a fan that doubles as a heater but requires a specific line on the electrical panel.
Next one of our favorite topics… lighting! There’s no shortage of variety when it comes to choosing bathroom lights. It really depends on the style of your bathroom. To name a few there are, chandeliers, Hollywood strip lights, bath bars, and traditional vanity lights. A handy place to start when deciding on bathroom lighting is to consider the style you are going for, then determine if it will work with the space you have.
A chandelier if a gorgeous accent lighting feature that can easily double as a focal point over a stand alone tub and make you feel fancy! Hollywood strip lights offer a fun glam and bright lighting option if you’re looking to add character and originality to your bathroom. Bath bars have a way of bringing about a modern flare and traditional vanity lights are practical and classic.
It’s important to remember that not all lighting options will treat your spaces equally. Consider the shade and tone you’re going for and that it’s important for the light to shed the most true quality of light as possible. Choosing LED lights is a must as it will save you quite a bit of money and energy in the long run. When choosing the quality of lights, lumens are an important factor. What are Lumens? They are often on the marked on the lighting package and indicate the strength of the bulb. Essentially the lower the lumens, the dimmer the light. If you’re looking to brighten up a space look for bulbs with a higher lumen.
In addition to practicality, adding accent light to your bathroom is important to create the mood of the space you’re working with. Accent lights come in various forms such wall sconces above eye level, overhead flush mount lights with a variety of defused shades, uplight cascading various colors along a wall or even an LED shower head. Like any well designed room, layering textures is a pro-tip. This can also be applied to lighting. Adding multiple lighting options adds dimension and depth and adds a sense of lux and ease to your space. Here are some expert tips you might want to consider when choosing your lighting:
- Choose a wet-rated recessed light over your shower or bath for added safety
- To create the illusion of a wider and taller room, use LED strips under shelves or mirrors- their shadow adds depth and dimension
- for added pizzaz mix your media by combining recessed lights with pendant lights. This adds a hard v soft look.
- Consider using lit mirror, wall strips or sconces for added makeup light
- Remember to center the light over the sink for even lighting tone on your face
- It is recommended to install the light between 75” and 78” off the floor to keep glare at a minimum
- When choosing a light fixture for a vanity it’s important to look for one that is between 25-50% the width of the mirror to keep your proportions in check.
One last piece of advice when choosing the lighting for your bathroom is to remember that in a bathroom, no matter how small it is, each area serves a purpose and should be lit accordingly.
Lastly let’s talk about how plumbing fixtures add to the design of a bathroom. A good place to start as always is to consider your budget as well as your style and finish preference. Then choose two you like and make a decision on one them. Like everything else we’ve mentioned there’s a myriad of options to choose from regarding finish; bronze, black, satin, antiqued, nickel, chrome, brass, ect. It really depends on your preference and the look you’re going for. In our opinion timeless is always a good route to go, and (up for debate) fitting that bill would be bronze and chrome.
A hot trend right now is gold and brushed gold accents paired with grey and neutral tones. This combination adds an element of class and sings of good taste. It also sets the stage for added pops of color elsewhere. Gold adds a unique flare to your bathroom and also allows for more big statement pieces while keeping a harmonious vibe with the rest of the space.
If you’re going for a more industrial feel, bronze might just be for you. It brings a subtle hint of class while hiding fingerprints and watermarks. A bronze shower head paired with a matted granite tile will feel elegant and fresh. If you’re looking for drama how about adding some black on black to intensify things? For example a black faucet paired with a blacked rimmed mirror can transform your bathroom to chic and modern.
I think we’ve given you enough ideas to start with!, Whatever your endeavors entail remember to stay true to you and your design aesthetic. You are the one who has to live with it after all!